Q: We’re building a new home this year, and we need information on bathtub choices to help us lay out the master bathroom. We’ll have a separate shower stall, so can you give us a quick rundown on some basic bathtub style choices?

A: Here is a bit of information about five tub styles I’ve worked with:

Alcove. This is the standard bathtub design. Three walls surround the tub on the sides and back, and the front has a built-in apron.

Drop-in. This versatile style offers many installation options because it sits on top of a finished, framed structure.

Undermount. Similar to the drop-in, but as the name indicates, it’s mounts below the finished deck for a modern look.

Corner. This style is a great space-saver that installs in the corner of a bathroom. Many include built-in front aprons.


Freestanding. A trendy choice, this stand-alone style can be finished on all sides and often looks more like a work of art that a bathtub.

With any style you choose, you’ll also need to consider the color, material, features and tub-filler options.


Ed Del Grande is a master plumber, contractor and author. Send questions to eadelg@cs.com.